Columbus satnav - what a load of rubbish!

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Now covered 8k in my Superb 170 Combi Elegance - car is fantastic - quite, smooth, quick, economical, refined - one big fly in the ointment though - Columbus satnavemoticon-0149-no.gifemoticon-0149-no.gifemoticon-0149-no.gifemoticon-0149-no.gif

This bit of kit is worse than useless (I have the partial postcode version) - it is the most un-intuitive/user un-friendly satnav I have ever used, some of the instructions are a complete waste of time/confusing - "carry on along this road for a long time, traffic problems, you have been re-routed (no I haven't)" etc. On several occasions it has taken me to the wrong destination or via a route that makes no sense (particularly when using the Lat/Long input. I now check google maps to ensure that the thing has selected the correct destination. Previous Honda/Volvo units have been paragons of efficiency compared to the Columbus.

I can't believe that VAG fit this in to many of their vehicles (Golfs, Passat;s Audi's Bentley Continental?) - any one else had similar problems?

If you are thinking of speccing this as an optional extra - don't - get a TomTom or Garmin instead.

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This is my only reservation with the Elegance... my tomtom with IQ routes and HD traffic (or whatever they're called) is, sell 'superb'... it's saved me loads of time by re-routing me around traffic jams. Of course, the VAG satnav (lets not forget this isn't a Skoda quirk) isn't anywhere near as clever, and I do wonder how often I'll actually use it over the tomtom.

If it wasn't a standard option, I doubt I would have opted for it, personally. Mind you, having the street names and directions on the maxi-dot is a nice feature :)

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Maps are clear, navigation is precise, directions in MaxiDot are handy... Ok, so input is slow and "Continue on the road for a long time" is a useless command, but i cant see myself going back to a portable unit!

Admittedly, i now have the full post-code maps on, and it does make life alot easier than before...

Al.

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Maps are clear, navigation is precise, directions in MaxiDot are handy... Ok, so input is slow and "Continue on the road for a long time" is a useless command, but i cant see myself going back to a portable unit!

Admittedly, i now have the full post-code maps on, and it does make life alot easier than before...

Al.

Al, did you upgrade to the full post code? How did you do this?

Yes maps are clear but controls/instructions awful/complex.

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Apart from some reliability issues I have found the Columbus a good all round piece of kit. bear in mind that it is first and foremost a music machine to me and a navigation aid second.

I have yet to get an upgrade to 7 digit postcode and when I do, it will be good enough for me. My wife has a garmin for her BMW and I get fed up quickly with all these cables and ropey sounding prompts. The Columbus is so much neater...

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Thinking about it, "continue along the road for a long time" would suffice, assuming the next instruction came at the appropriate time... knowing the satnav, it would probably just say "you went too far".

Edited by Superbalicious

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Thinking about it, "continue along the road for a long time" would suffice, assuming the next instruction came at the appropriate time... knowing the satnav, it would probably just say "you went too far".

It's just so vague - previous Honda unit would say " stay on this road for another 71 miles (etc)". Screen would automatically zoom in for junctions, lane control was in BIG graphics - ie easy to read (columbus lane control graphic is hard to read at a glance. WHole lot of things that just don't seem to have been thought through from an ergonomical/ease of use perspective.

And don't get me started on the control for cruise control - what on earth is wrong with a steering wheel mounted set of buttons that include a "resume" button (labelled as such) grrrrrrr emoticon-0183-swear.gifemoticon-0183-swear.gifemoticon-0183-swear.gifemoticon-0183-swear.gifemoticon-0183-swear.gifemoticon-0183-swear.gif . Col stalk is almost as unfriendly as BMW version......

Edited by GordonH

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Hmm... interesting point on the cruise control... I take it it's still combined in the indicator stalk? I drove a Passat recently and it had a dedicated 3rd stalk for the cruise control and it was pants, I just couldn't get on with it at all. The cruise on the Octavia loan car I have is built into the indicator stalk and I find it easy to use (although it's a similar set up to my old Saab 93).

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and "Continue on the road for a long time" is a useless command

Made me laugh the first time I heard this though. I'd just pulled on to the M25 and I thought yeah how true!! ;) ;) ;) ;)

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Now covered 8k in my Superb 170 Combi Elegance - car is fantastic - quite, smooth, quick, economical, refined - one big fly in the ointment though - Columbus satnavemoticon-0149-no.gifemoticon-0149-no.gifemoticon-0149-no.gifemoticon-0149-no.gif

This bit of kit is worse than useless (I have the partial postcode version) - it is the most un-intuitive/user un-friendly satnav I have ever used, some of the instructions are a complete waste of time/confusing - "carry on along this road for a long time, traffic problems, you have been re-routed (no I haven't)" etc. On several occasions it has taken me to the wrong destination or via a route that makes no sense (particularly when using the Lat/Long input. I now check google maps to ensure that the thing has selected the correct destination. Previous Honda/Volvo units have been paragons of efficiency compared to the Columbus.

I can't believe that VAG fit this in to many of their vehicles (Golfs, Passat;s Audi's Bentley Continental?) - any one else had similar problems?

If you are thinking of speccing this as an optional extra - don't - get a TomTom or Garmin instead.

sorry but i do not agree with you (although i do have v7 maps on mine)

i find the sat nat far better than the honda and as i have just had 3 of them all crv's over the last 8 years and to be honest it was pants all cars had atleast 3-4 replacement units over there life's and i only had cars for between 2-3 years and put over 350k miles on them

the phone intergration with the sat nav is spot on compared to the hondas were you couldnt make a call from the phone you could only use voice activation so unless you stored all your numbers manually (it only had 50 storable location) then the only way to make a call was to call from phone then drop call and do a redial i also have 4 coluouges with civics and they say the same

i have over 1500 hundred numbers in my phone and have used it both on rsap and bt modes and they have allways worked well

i have never had a portable unit although have used them i have had sat nav built in the car since 1998 s reg audi a6 (4k option !!)

i find the voice entry for destination/phone great and very reliable

3d function honda didnt have that neither did mine have auto scale depnding on speed which the columbus does very well

just my pennies worth

andy

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If the OP had been talking about the 2004 version that was in my Octy Elegance, I might have agreed! That said, the version I've now got in my 58 Superb II Elegance is way better than practically anything else I've seen - and I've seen loads. High end Jaguars and Range Rovers both suffer from screen overload - you really have to peer at them to make out where you are and the route from all the other un-necessary crap they display. High end Mercs (S500, etc.) are better, but still pants as their display is over-simplified. Rolls Royce Phantom has a really poor unit which, if you ignore it three times, shuts down and sulks. By far the best of any model I've driven is the top-of-the-range Lexus - excellent in every way, with clear directions and excellent mapping.

Given that the Superb is not a Lexus, my view is that the Columbus unit delivers a performance way above expectations for the price and represents very good value as an included extra. OK, it doesn't speak the street names like my Garmin mobile unit does, but its display is better and easier to view. The Maxidot repeater is worth its weight in gold, requiring only a very occasional glance at the main screen for confirmation and/or lane guidance. OK, I've got version 7 mapping, 2760 firmware and full postcode entry - all of which are easy and effective upgrades that should be a dealer freebie, but it's a harsh world and service takes a back seat to costs nowadays.

The considerable number of people who have now ridden in my Superb have all been impressed with the clarity and speed of updating of the satnav. There is a multitude of setup options which include the type of route you want, but Dynamic routing depends entirely on the supplied DVD. I'm sorry that your experience isn't the same as mine and respect that your opinion differs, but upgrading maps and firmware isn't rocket surgery! :)

Ray

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Cant agree with the bad coments on the Columbus (but I do have the 7 digit input) found it to be a pretty good system overall, much better than the system in my business parners Jag and the one I had in my SAAB. I Like the additional display on the dash and the timings have been fairly accurate and so far it has not failed me in the 12K miles since 28th November. Only1had 1 slightproblem but that was due to a road being turned into a one way 3 weeks before.

But that said haven't found anything up to the standard of the Smart Nav system I had before. but that was a monthly subscription. If you couldn't get a post code entry - press the button and a person would answer and sort it for you, been directed to addresses by just giving the comany name, real time traffic updates and the oldest map update would be 12 weeks!

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Never had any directional problems with my other Superbs with Columbus, distances times and routes have always been ok. First ones I had only had the 5 figure post code but that was no problem, the 7 figure postcode seems to work reasonably well. I found that Navsync was excellent for input. Having taught marine navigation I usually used Google Earth and entered the Lat/Long this never failed once in all three vehicles. I have tried the AA & RAC route finders, one on a trip to the Isle of Arran Scotland, directed me to take a ferry to Southern Ireland drive North and take another ferry back to the mainland before travelling on to the Arran ferry. Entering the Lat/Long I wanted on Arran, the Columbus gave me the correct route in seconds. I do use the Sat Nav as a back up, no navigation system is perfect or completely up to date, never rely 100% on it, and follow the instructions in the book.

Keep a map in the vehicle they are very useful, how did anyone manage to get past the end of their road before Sat Nav.

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I think this is the first thing I am going to put in my Superb : http://www.eglober.com/ProductShow.asp?ID=1993

There is version for Bolero as well. With this you can install whatever navigation software you like, and keep original touchscreen functionality. There might be issues with warranties but I made agreement with my dealer to install this for me since there is no coverage from Skoda for Serbia :(

I think that this is much better than replacing unit with complete Chinese clones.

Edited by rocktheroad

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And don't get me started on the control for cruise control - what on earth is wrong with a steering wheel mounted set of buttons that include a "resume" button (labelled as such) grrrrrrr emoticon-0183-swear.gifemoticon-0183-swear.gifemoticon-0183-swear.gifemoticon-0183-swear.gifemoticon-0183-swear.gifemoticon-0183-swear.gif . Col stalk is almost as unfriendly as BMW version......

I don't have a Columbus so can't comment on that but can't agree with you more on this awful cruise control stalk! It is RUBBISH. The thing you do most in the UK is to Cancel and Resume. On a Mercedes with one CC stalk that is just a forward and backward flick - a child can understand it. On the Škoda - no lets blame VW, on the VW system the cencel is a toggle that makes a tick noise every time I use it no matter if I just click it once and not fully off. And then resume sits on the side on a different plane to cancel.....

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the mercedes cc stalk is the worst control i have ever seen or used sticking out as it does looks like it was added after they built the car you are always knocking it when using the indicators.

on my old mondeo and my superb just two small buttons and the jobs don.

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I think the Columbus is a great piece of kit. I don't even have the latest full post code version. It's not Tom-Tom but then again Tom-Tom has one job to do, good old Columbus is a fine multi-tasker.

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the mercedes cc stalk is the worst control i have ever seen or used sticking out as it does looks like it was added after they built the car you are always knocking it when using the indicators.

on my old mondeo and my superb just two small buttons and the jobs don.

I agree the Mondeo system was real good, one button to set and then the resume button that would turn the CC on and off with a press of the thumb.

Also agree the VW stalk is better than the Merc stalk, so I can live with it.

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I've not used the Columbus yet, but as the owner of a BMW branded Garmin unit from my last car, I cannot recommend Garmin.

The routes often leave a lot to be desired and are not, imo, the quickest route. Also, it often fails to recognise direction of travel and the road I'm on if too close to other roads.

I've used tom tom and Navman units previously and found them to be very good, as is the Nissan unit built in to swmbo's X-trail.

As for cc stalk, if it's the same as the Superb I, then I found that a good and easy system to use.

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I'm pleased and satisfied with Columbus. Takes me from point A to B reliably and comfortably, while i listen to some music. It's my swiss army knife infotainment system.

I will NEVER NEVER AGAIN go back to portable navigators.

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CC stalk works well wat do u want from CC ? Columbus never let me down yet interface is nice better than Garmin or Tom Tom only thing I have a prob with is Maps not been updated more often other than that Columbus great system. Anyone gets in my car are amazed a Skoda have such great spec

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I too do not think Columbus is a load of rubbish!

As far as built-in satn navs go, it is up there amongst the best, far better than Ford, Honda or even Merc for quality of map display.

Where it scores is in its integration. I will have the map view on Columbus, with a split screen showing Overview. This gives me the main close-in nav on the right of the screen, and a north-up map of the remainder of my journey on the left. I have my Maxidot set to Nav, so I can see the manoeovre symbol for the next event, which shows current and next road.

At the same time I am listening to music either on the hard drive or on the radio. That music mutes as Columbus announces the next event (the level of muting is adjustable).

Yes, lady does say 'stay on this road for a long time', but only when the next leg is more than 10 miles. Not too unreasonable, I would say.

Columbus is expensive compared to a TomTom, Garmin etc, but it is totally integrated into the car (rear parking sensor graphic, sound muting during reversing, etc), there are no trailing wires draped down to the power socket and, when it is VAT free, reasonable value for money.

Go, Columbus!

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The Columbus,is also a lot more than a satnav. You can load MP3 tunes directly onto its internal HDD, add an MDI and you can plug in iPODs, USB HDDs, and more. You can play DVD's, albeit when stationary, it also integrates fully with car giving you climate, parking and other info and gives you full control of the bluetooth phone if fitted. Think of the columbus as a multimedia control centre rather than just a satnav.

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Lets start a Columbus appreciation club !

I'll sign up when I get my 7 digit postcode entry working :o:D

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